• Thursday, Dec 03, 2020
  • Last Update : 03:55 pm

Shamima's mother asks UK Home Office to show mercy

  • Published at 01:20 pm March 12th, 2019
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File Photo: Renu Begum, sister of teenage British-Bangladeshi girl Shamima Begum, holds a photo of her sister as she makes an appeal for her to return home at Scotland Yard, in London, Britain February 22, 2015 Reuters

Asma Begum asked UK authorities to reconsider its decision of revoking her daughter’s citizenship

Mother of Shamima Begum—a British-Bangladeshi who joined the Islamic State—has written to the UK Home Office for reconsidering its decision of stripping her daughter of her citizenship.

At the age of 15, Shamima went to Syria with two other schoolgirls to join Islamic State in February 2015. According to a BBC report, three of her children, born in Syria, died during her time there. Last week, her third child Jarrah-- who was three-week-old—died. 

The UK's Home Secretary Sajid Javid has been criticized the decision of removing Shamima's British citizenship; a move that left her stateless and Jarrah in legal limbo, reports The Guardian.

The family’s lawyer published the following letter to the Home Ministry on his Twitter page: “We write ... to ask you to reconsider your previous decision dated 19 February 2019 to deprive her daughter of her British citizenship … Ms [Asma] Begum requests this reconsideration, as an act of mercy, on the basis of the following new information, namely the death of her [Shamima's] newborn son.”

The letter continues: “It is extremely unlikely that Shamima will be in a fit state to make any rational decisions.” 

It adds that a request for help from the government was “refused in writing.”

Two weeks ago, Shamima's sister, Renu, wrote to the home secretary to challenge the citizenship removal, as she described retaining the citizenship as Shamima's "only hope at rehabilitation," reports the BBC. 

Responding to an urgent question, on the subject, in the House of Commons, on Monday, the home secretary strongly rejected suggestions that he was responsible for the baby’s death, reports The Guardian. 

He told MPs: “The death of any British child, even those children born to a foreign terrorist fighter, of course is a tragedy; but the only person responsible for the death of that child is the foreign terrorist fighter.” 

The bishop of St Albans, the Rt Rev Dr Alan Smith, said: “The home secretary has a responsibility to ensure people in this country are protected. We could have done this by taking her through due process and it is to be regretted if we are not following it, because this is a human rights issue.”

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